“It’s nothing but time and a face that you lose…”

Where the south nave meets the south transept, near the entrance to the gift shop, is this fellow. As gargoyles go, he’s not lurid or menacing, but he does know his role in architectural tradition.


“On a skull in Salamanca
High within a grand façade
Croaking notes of grace eternal
Roosts a rana loved by God.”

So the tourist told his lover
Smiling up through falling snow.
“Strange,” she said, “sounds Salamanca.
What bright boon do frogs bestow?”

“Should two souls in Salamanca
Chance to see the frog,” he said,
“Blessed days are bound to follow;
In a year, the two will wed.”

Glancing down, she glimpsed a garden;
Frozen roses felt her sigh:
“We are not in Salamanca.”
Windy whipped the winter sky.

Side by side, the silent strangers
Shuffling slowly through the snow
Spoke no more of Salamanca;
Where they went, I do not know.

(For all the entries in this series, hit the “looking up” tag.)

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